It's a common myth that anyone who writes well can be a copywriter. The truth, however, is that great copywriters possess unique skills and traits that aren't common to all writers. If your goal is to be an effective copywriter, the good news for you is that these skills and traits can be learned. As in most things, the key to writing great copy is lots of practice.
If you're looking to hire a copywriter for your business, the following 5 characteristics of great copywriters will help you sort out the truly talented from the merely mediocre.
1. Great Copywriters Solve Problems
A good copywriter will understand the core of your business as well as its ability to solve a customer's problem. A great copywriter can translate that into copy that helps you gain customers. People are attracted to fresh, unique copy, but they also need to feel an emotion before they’ll pull out their wallets and buy your services or products. Promising a solution to their problem often does the trick.
A talented copywriter knows how create copy that makes an emotional connection, often by looking at your product from a customer’s point of view and stressing the benefits of choosing yours over your competitor’s. Writing copy is about solving a problem, as illustrated by Copyblogger.
2. Great Copywriters Understand Websites
Whether intuitively or through years of experience, a professional copywriter knows the essentials of great website copy. They know how to fill a site with compelling content, not fluff and word count. Your copywriter should be filled with the creativity to produce original copy ideas for your business and be willing to make suggestions to benefit your site.
A great copywriter will be able to point out the areas of your site that are working while making recommendations regarding those that might need to be changed. A talented copywriter understands the tone or voice that your company has developed and will mesh their work seamlessly into your existing content. Not sure your website copy is doing the trick? Check out this post by Unbounce.
3. Great Copywriters Want to Build a Partnership
Great copywriters have many things in common, and the most important is a desire to see your company succeed. If you’ve hired the right copywriter, it will feel like you have a partner who revels in the success of your business as much as you do. They understand the path to success and will take in your ideas while also providing some of their own.
Often, great copywriters will go above and beyond to help you succeed. They will usually lend value and knowledge beyond the bare minimum required to meet their obligations. They will appreciate the business relationship developing and strive to be supportive partners working for the success of your company. And why wouldn't they? After all, your success equals their success.
4. Great Copywriters are Interested in Trends
Successful copywriters are intensely curious. They write on a variety of topics and don't mind doing research if they don't have knowledge of a subject. They have a thirst for trivia and tidbits, which means they can spend a lot of time researching obscure ideas. This can translate into unique content ideas that will help evolve your business.
Good copywriters will give you a new spin on a common subject, too. With all the research that copywriters do on a daily basis, they tend to have a solid understanding of current trends in web design, content creation and marketing. This information is extremely valuable for your business.
5. Great Copywriters are Flexible
Sometimes business owners and copywriters will have different ideas about the path of the copy creation or implementation. A business owner might not have a clear direction for their content, or they might have misguided goals. Maybe they've bought into common copywriting myths. A great copywriter will be confident enough to voice opinions and ideas that help the client meet their goals, but know when to step aside and let the client make decisions.
A professional copywriter is able to answer questions knowledgeably, take constructive criticism, and make changes based on your direction. Copywriters might voice their opinions about changes to the copy, but they understand that it's your business and ultimately your decision.
A great copywriter will do their research and work hard to create copy that speaks to your audience and converts readers into paying customers. Knowing how to hire (or be) a great copywriter often comes down to knowing what traits to look for, and this list is a good place to start.
Do you have anything else to add? Let us know in the comments!